May 23, 2013 Pride Toronto announces 2013 International Grand Marshal
23 May 2013 (Toronto) – Pride Toronto has selected human rights defender Marcela Romero as the International Grand Marshal (IGM) for the 2013 Pride Toronto festival.
Hailing from Buenos Aires, Marcela Romero has worked with human rights defenders in Latin America and the Caribbean, developing strategies to tackle stigma, hate crimes, discrimination and human rights abuses against trans people. She attended the Organization of American States (OAS) as an advocate for gender identity laws in Latin American and Caribbean countries. She has been recognized for her hard work in advocating for the gender identity law that was passed in Argentina in May 2012, allowing trans people to change the sex on their identity cards to reflect their gender identity without having to undergo gender reassignment surgery.
“Pride Toronto is proud to welcome Marcela Romero to Toronto as the International Grand Marshal for 2013,” said Francisco Alvarez, Pride Toronto Co-Chair. “We are looking forward to hearing her story of advocacy for trans human rights, and learning from her achievements.”
The annual appointment of the IGM is part of Pride Toronto’s “Global Human Rights for Queers: What OUT is About” program. Now in its eighth year, the ‘What OUT is About’ program raises awareness of LGBTTIQQ2SA human rights issues around the world, including discrimination and inequality, gender identity, homophobia and transphobia, criminalization of homosexuality and trans people, and violence against queer and trans people.
“The struggle for LGBTTIQQ2SA human rights around the world continues,” said Sean Hillier, Pride Toronto’s Co-Chair, “but we are encouraged by successes and stories of courage like Marcela’s.”
“Every year, Pride Toronto selects an International Grand Marshal from a different region of the world, recognizing leadership and achievement in human rights. As a leader in her community, Marcela Romero brings with her a powerful and inspiring story of how courage can overcome prejudice and fear,” said Kevin Beaulieu, Executive Director of Pride Toronto.
As the 2013 International Grand Marshal, Marcela Romero will attend Pride Toronto’s official events, such as: the media launch party, Beyond Borders, a panel discussion and social reception: The Struggle for LGBT Human Rights in Latin America, and the Caribbean on Tuesday June 25, 2013, as well as other official events, affiliated events and community partner events.
She will also join this year’s Toronto Grand Marshal and Honoured Group at the head of the 33rd annual Toronto Pride Parade on Sunday July 1, 2013 at 2 p.m.
MARCELA ROMERO: Regional Coordinator for the Latin American and Caribbean Network of Transgender People (REDLACTRANS)
Marcela Romero is an Argentinean activist and human rights defender for the transgender population in Latin America and the Caribbean. She serves as a Regional Coordinator for the Latin American and Caribbean Network of Transgender People, an organization established in 2005 to provide a positive representation of the transgender community in Latin America.
Marcela also serves as Director of the Argentinean Association of Transvestites, Transsexuals and Transgender People (ATTTA) where she was a driving force for the movement of public health care professionals in hospitals throughout the City of Buenos Aries referring to trans identified people with a generic name.
Her work also includes developing strategies to tackle stigma, hate crimes, discrimination and human rights abuse against the trans population in Latin America. She attended the Organization of American States (OAS) where she was able to increase advocacy and was part of the passing of the Gender Identity Law in Argentina in May 2012. This law allowed transgendered people to change the sex on their personal identification cards without having to undergo gender reassignment surgery.
Currently Marcela is supporting projects to advocate for Gender Identity Laws in Bolivia, El Salvador, Brazil and Guatemala.